The point of departure is the assumption that ecological sustainable development is the highest goal for society. While the over-riding purpose of the study is to demonstrate how this objective can be of relevance to law, the means is to adapt the judicial system to achieve ecocycles of natural resources that are as self-contained as possible, against a background of the often dissipative flows of thepresent day. The study focuses on the ecocycles of a selected resource, phosphorous, and the legal analysis is mainly done on Swedish legislation.
The fundamental physical preconditions for continued human life are largely summed up by what is described by the laws of thermodynamics. Expressions like exergy and entropy, introduced into the context of availability and irreversibility, help us to understand the basic causes of what are commonly known as environmental and developmental problems. By translating mankind's degradation of the natural environment into something objective whose real value is not contingent upon human valuation, we obtain a parameter, a weight-norm, that does not change, either with national boundaries or over time.
The study shows that there are primarily four 'parameters' that are of crucial importance for ecocycle management; what resource is in focus, what purpose underlies the management in question, where in the flow, regulation should be introduced, and finally to choose the legal technique that is deemed to be the most efficacious, The superordinated factor has proven to be what resource is in focus, and the study describes a model for a resource analysis and how by applying this model it is possible to identify the special characteristics of individual natural resources.
For this ecocycle purpose, the study also systematises various legal techniques, based on what they relate to, such as human behaviour or deliberations (named actor-related norms) respectively to situations or to flows (named reactor-related norms).
Finally, the study provides two principal alternatives for managing the flow of resources; `basic regulation' and 'point regulation' respectively. These two alternatives, and the combination of them, are analysed in the study.
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis , 1998. , , 435 p.
1998-11-06, universitetets lärosal IX, Uppsala universitet, Uppsala, 10:15 (English)